IN HOPE OF ETERNAL LIFE
Titus 1:1-4 Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness; in hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began; but hath in due times manifested His word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Savior; to Titus, mine own son after the common faith: grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior.
From the New Testament Explanatory Notes by B. W. Johnson,we find this introduction to the epistle to Titus. " The Epistle to Titus was written before the second, and there is good reason to believe, after the First Epistle to Timothy. It belongs to a period when Paul was not a prisoner, and can hardly be assigned to that portion of his life, which is covered by the historian of Acts. There is not in Acts any allusion whatever to a visit to Crete, or to churches in that great island, a fact that cannot be accounted for except by placing his Cretan ministry tour after his first imprisonment. It is probable that churches had been planted before his visit, as in Rome and many other places; that after his first letter to Timothy he returned to Ephesus, and from thence passed into the island. When he left, as the work of organization was left incomplete, Titus remained in order to supply the things that are wanting (Vs. 5), and afterwards Paul wrote (this letter) to him to give further instructions concerning the work."
With this preview, Paul introduces himself in this letter to Titus, as he often did in other epistles, as a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ. Paul served God by preaching the gospel message of salvation through Jesus Christ to the world. This he didaccording to the faith of God's elect. Once the truths of God's word were revealed to Paul he immediately understood it, believed it, accepted it, and with it, replaced his previous misunderstandings of God's word. By these truths, Paul's faith was established, he accepted Jesus Christ as the Messiah, the Savior of the world, was baptized for the remission of his past sins, and was added by God to the body of Christ, His church. It is by one's actions that result from this same faith by which all of God's children, the elect, come to Christ.
The same faith by which the apostle Paul found the hope of eternal salvation; the same faith found in the truths of God's revealed word, is the same faith he acknowledges to the world by his preaching. It is the same faith by which the world can come to know, believe, accept, and obey God's will, be baptized into the body of Christ, and enjoy the same hope of eternal salvation, that was found, accepted, and obeyed by the apostle Paul.
From this we know that everything Paul did, after his conversion on the road to Damascus, was done with this forward-looking view - in hope of eternal life. Paul found it, and for the remainder of his life on earth, dedicated himself to the cause of Christ, preaching to all people, both Jew and Gentile, that, by obedience to God's will, they, too, might have this same hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began. Unlike mankind, God cannot speak falsely. What He says is true; what He says is factual; what He says took place exactly as He promised. Therefore, what He says to the world today will take place, and we have the assurance that it will certainly occur just as He said. Even the erring prophet, Balaam confessed this truth, when he is quoted by Moses as saying to Balak, God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: hath He said, and shall He not do it? Or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good (Num. 23:19)?
Indeed, God promised the hope of eternal life for all mankind, before the beginning of time (See 2 Tim. 1:8-10; Rom. 16:25-27; 1 Pet. 1:20-23). That promise of God, made in His own inspired words, is assured because He cannot lie. Paul continues his testimony by writing that God hath in due times manifested His word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Savior. These truths of God were given, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit of God, to the apostle Paul with the commandment to bear My name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel (Acts 9:15). In this letter, these same truths written to Titus, and to all the read them, in hope of eternal life!